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What #Brexit could mean for UK eCRM

#Brexit #Bremain European Union flag

Image credit: Jason Holland, Creative Director, THE CRM Agency

Earlier this month (April 2016), The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was adopted to supersede the Data Protection Directive (1995) and regulate the processing of personal data regarding individuals within the European Union. GDPR’s initial proposal was released on 25 January 2012 and is widely considered to be an important component of EU privacy and human rights law. The new regulations will take effect after an initial two-year transition period. So, in 2018, new regulations that were SIX YEARS in the making, will come in to full force for all countries still in the EU, or involved in storing and using data regarding EU citizens.

Customer data is a major consideration for any eCRM campaign, however, if you’re on the supplier side, you’ll also be well used to working with client companies whose marketing staff are in the UK but whose finance teams are in Dublin or further afield. VAT exemption codes broadly do their job at the moment but, what if mutual taxation agreements change?

We should also consider the “hub and spoke” strategies that help client marketers determine which market(s) takes the lead on a campaign and which markets are destined to translate / localise / trans-create that work. English has frequently been the “natural” starting point. However, what if a European Marketing Director role is moved from a UK city to a non-UK EU city? It could be good news for Dublin agencies if clients choose to retain the combination of originating in English (for global purposes) but want to keep all work within the EU for a wide variety of other reasons.

And where would we stand regarding software designed in North America? Currently, the UK is a “no brainer” step involving retaining core English language (we can debate English vs British English another time) but localising for legal, data formatting and other criteria, before then translating for other EU languages. However, if our laws diverge, how tempting could it become to address EU law first THEN create the UK English language version? What could we miss out on completely?

I’ve worked many times for international clients (Adobe, Ford, Heineken, Thomson Reuters, T-Mobile, etc.) and always relish the opportunity to collaborate with experts in multiple European countries and beyond. Personally, I feel it would be a great shame if that became harder. Even in the short to mid-term, which, judging by the time it takes to update regulations, could be many years.

Finally, it’s worth noting that Brexit is rather a misnomer, especially if you live in Northern Ireland (or work with NI companies and/or customer data). Under The Maastricht Treaty of 1993, we’re confirmed as members of The European Union as The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (UK) rather than Great Britain (GB). So, if it didn’t sound like a comedy festival, the “out” campaign should really be called #UKwit!

Where do you stand on #Brexit #Bremain?

Recommended reading: How Remain and Leave camps use #hashtags

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